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N. Korea media demands 'practical acts' and 'sincerity' from Seoul to improve relations

All News 09:38 April 30, 2019

SEOUL, April 30 (Yonhap) -- A North Korean propaganda outlet urged South Korea on Tuesday to take "practical acts" and show its "sincerity" to improve inter-Korean relations as concerns are growing over slowing cross-border exchanges amid stalled denuclearization talks.

North Korea has been demanding that South Korea voice its own opinions free from outside influence in inter-Korean affairs, calling on Seoul not to mind the United States but to be more active in implementing the summit agreements signed last year.

"It would be a miscalculation to expect to see the North-South relations improve on its own only if it talks about peace and improvement in relations," Meari, a North Korean propaganda website, said. "The relations cannot be improved with only one side making efforts. We can expect a result when the North and the South work together."

"Only when South Korea comes back to the original intention it had at the time of the Panmunjom meeting and the September meeting in Pyongyang, walks in lockstep with our republic and shows its sincerity with practical acts, will we be able to see the North-South relations advance to a higher level," it added, referring to the summits held in April and September between their leaders.

This is in line with what North Korean leader Kim Jong-un demanded from South Korea during his recent policy speech at the Supreme People's Assembly. He called for a "bold decision" from Seoul to prove its "sincerity in practical acts, not in words."

Inter-Korean relations have not moved forward much recently, with major cross-border projects placed on hold, apparently affected by stalemated denuclearization talks between Washington and Pyongyang.

Concerns have been mounting further that the sluggish mood could drag on following the breakdown of February's summit between North Korean leader Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump.

North Korea did not send its officials for an event last Saturday held on the southern side of the border village of Panmunjom to mark the first anniversary of last year's inter-Korean summit. Pyongyang has also yet to respond to Seoul's offer for another summit aimed at improving their bilateral ties and helping jump-start stalled denuclearization talks.

Artists perform at the event held on the southern side of the truce village of Panmunjom to mark the first anniversary of the April 27 inter-Korean summit on April 27, 2019. North Koreans did not attend the event. (Pool photo) (Yonhap)


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